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Last week we had a couple crush on the outrageous Amanda and Luke from Queensland and this week we have fallen head over heels for the lovely Rachel and her husband Johnny. What can we say, they can throw one hell of a backyard wedding and seem like the kind of folk we’d like to enjoy a cider with on a lazy sunday afternoon.

Married in Newport, Victoria, Rachel and Johnny’s day was filled with so much love we found it hard to cull the photos from 600 to the ones you now see before you. Taken by the ever so amazing Lakshal Perera, who also happens to have shot the wedding on the cover of issue two of Hello May magazine, on the newsstands now AND who’s photographic services you could win by purchasing a copy at your local newsagent.

We are digging everything about Rachel’s get up. The poster child for a non-traditional bride she swanned down the aisle in a freaking fantastic powder blue Alannah Hill gown, a gorgeous handmade floral crown from one of our fave Etsy stores Gardens of Whimsy and a pair of Mustard Tony Bianco shoes, of which she tells us “I walking past the shop, glanced through the windows and BANG! Those shoes hit me right in the kisser!!” Rachel’s bridesmaids were free to find their own floral dresses as she “wanted all their personalities to shine through the floral” How cute is that!

The ceremony at Newport Anglican Church was intimate and relaxed. Rachel explains “In old traditional Latin Culture, the couple is prayed for with a mantilla or a blanket/shawl covering their heads and backs at the end of the ceremony. My parents had it, their parents had it etc etc, and I wanted to carry that on in our own little way.”

Having the reception at Johnny’s parents house allowed the relaxed vibe and general feeling of warmth and good times to continue. Rachel says ” When we first started planning our wedding, we wanted to eliminate all the things that weren’t really necessary and would stress us out. We wanted to have fun planning this damned thing! So we decided on some friends’ hobby farm, but we realised with my horrible organisational skills, this was going to be a logistical nightmare! We culled that and went back to square one. Jonny’s parents offered up their place to have the reception! I love the idea of a backyard wedding because it’s someone’s home, we feel more relaxed and there’s no cut off time! We didn’t want any of that formal stuff, that’s just not how we are as people and we wanted the wedding to reflect who we were and how we saw life, a fun and open house!”

All the decorations where done by the bride and groom and their band of merry helpers and the flowers were arranged by Rach and her bridesmaids.

“We snuck into the Melbourne Flower Markets with very little sleep, a bit delusional and pretended to know what the hell we were doing… It was dark, we had very little sleep and jetted off to the Melbourne Flower Markets at 4:30am, where you need to wear at least a high vis vest (that we scored off our brothers). In our delusional, sleep deprived state, we made up a song called “High Visibility”, danced the robot and made creepy rhymes. It was such a great release from all the tension and anticipation that comes in the days leading up”

Of the rest of the details Rachel tells us “I tried to make all the paper pom poms myself but after about a day and half of nonstop folding and fluffing I got RSI and recruited some friends into making the paper cranes and the rest of the pom poms. I also made all the bunting myself. That was the most fun and relaxing part of the wedding planning. I love sewing and these were super easy. I work for an organisation called Green Collect that deals with recycling, ethical and eco-friendly goodness and the fabric scraps were donated to us”

“We had so many people help us out in the planning stages and even on the day of the wedding, if it wasn’t for everyone lending sound gear, cutlery, their house, their time, skills, EVERYTHING, the day and time leading up to it would not be as beautiful as it was. Jonny and I believe in community and this wedding really showed the beautiful people around us that we call family.”

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CREDITS Photos Lakshal Perera // Bridal gown Alannah Hill // Floral crown Gardens of Whimsy via Etsy // Shoes Tony Bianco // Rings Alexis Russell via Etsy // Flowers Melbourne Flower Markets // Bridesmaids dresses PortmansASOSPulp KitchenOff Ya Tree // Grooms pants and suspenders Pulp Kitchen // Grooms shirt Ben Sherman // Grooms bowtie Roger David // Grooms shoes Kings of Carnaby // Ceremony Christchurch Newport Anglican Church // Reception Jonny’s Parent’s Backyard // Catering Señor BBQ // Cakes made by friends, Marks Cakes and Mister Nice Guy // Ben Liney // Celebrant John de Blank.